Albert “Al” J. Hofstede – the youngest person to be elected Mayor of Minneapolis at age 34 – passed away over the weekend.
He was surrounded by friends and family at Abbott Northwestern Hospital, according to the Star Tribune. Hofestede died from a respiratory illness at age 75.
He was not only the youngest mayor ever elected, but the city’s first Catholic mayor as well. He first served as mayor from 1974-75, and then he lost the following election to another former mayor. Yet Hofstede was re-elected and served another term from 1978-79. Hofstede was also on the Minneapolis City Council for four years and a chairman on the Metropolitan Council.
Hofstede’s main passion was expanding affordable housing for lower-income residents, and he worked hard to improve the city’s housing stock, reported the Star Tribune.
“I was never the type to sit back and watch. You have to take action,” said Hofstede in an University of St. Thomas article published in 2000. Hofstede not only graduated from St. Thomas in 1964, but he also served on their Board of Trustees and sent his two children to college there.
“Al Hoftsede was a mayor who stood by his convictions and fought hard for Minneapolis every day,” current Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges said to WCCO. “He was kind, and a friend to me. I will miss him very much.”
Senator Amy Klobuchar tweeted about Holfstede’s passing:
Others that knew him had only kind things to say on Facebook on his passing:
Funeral arrangements are still pending according to Our Lady of Lourdes – a Catholic church where Hofstede was a trustee of the parish.